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Word is getting out about South Australia’s national parks

August 1, 2014 Destination Global, Headline News No Comments Email Email

egtmedia59South Australia is known for its wild and inspiring natural parks, places where visitors can take it easy on a local walking trail, fish magnificent beaches, dive with sharks or sleep under the stars – often with no-one else in sight other than their chosen  travelling companions.

The state’s national parks are going from strength to strength, with a significant rise in visitors over the past financial year, new figures reveal.

South Australia’s Minister for Sustainability, Environment and Conservation, Ian Hunter, says total visitor numbers to five of the state’s more popular park sites grew to 316,663 last financial year – an increase of more than 6% on the previous year’s 298,615.

“Our parks are a tremendous asset for our State, and a great place for visitors and locals alike to enjoy our clean, green environment,” Hunter said.

“And they’re a drawcard for visitors from overseas and interstate – supporting both our economy and the tourism sector.

“Pleasingly, we’ve seen strong growth in both Cleland Wildlife Park and the World Heritage-listed Naracoorte Caves.

“Last financial year, 117,412 people had visited Cleland – up 10.2% on the 106,250 visitors recorded the previous year.

“Naracoorte Caves also recorded a strong rise in visitor numbers, up 7% to nearly 62,000 from more than 57,000 the year before.

“We expect cruise ship visits to the South East should see visitor numbers continue to rise in the future.”

Minister Hunter said Seal Bay on Kangaroo Island recorded a rise of 2.2% to 97,000 visitors last financial year, while Kelly Hill Caves had a 1% rise to 21,262 visitors and Mt Lofty Summit recorded just over 19,000 visitors last financial year.

“These are iconic South Australian experiences: holding the koalas and the feeding kangaroos at Cleland, marvelling at the spectacular limestone formations and the megafauna fossils in the caves at Naracoorte and watching the seals and sea lions at Seal Bay,” he said.

“In addition, we’ve seen recent survey data showing that 60 per cent of locals made at least one visit to a park each year.

“A breakdown of figures for Cleland Wildlife Park supports that, showing that nearly two-thirds of visitors are from South Australia, while a quarter come from overseas.”

Edited by : Peter Needham

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